Stepping stones add a nice finishing touch to your garden or landscaping. There are endless ways to be creative and personalize your stepping stones. Two popular kinds of homemade stepping stones are mosaic stepping stones and memorial stepping stones. Each of these ideas can be a great outlet for self-expression in your outdoor décor.
Step 1 - Design the Stepping Stone
It’s a good idea before you mix the cement to sketch your design ideas on paper. Whether you are writing words or making a mosaic design, it will make things less hectic if you know how the design elements fit onto the stepping stone before you begin.
Step 2 - Choose the Stepping Stone Mold
You can buy pre-made plastic stepping stone molds or you can make your own out of an aluminum baking dish. Garage sales and thrift stores are a good source for an improvised mold. Unless you want a beveled edge on your stepping stone, make certain that the sides of your mold are straight.
Step 3 - Prepare the Materials
Work on a comfortable surface covered with newspaper or old towels. Mix up the cement in the bowl according to the instructions. You can use a quick-dry cement, but this type of cement has a greater likelihood of cracking over time. Spray a little cooking oil or another lubricant into the bottom of the mold for easier removal.
Step 4 - Pour the Cement
Once the cement is mixed, spoon it into the mold to half the depth of the desired thickness. Then, shake the mold gently back and forth to remove any air bubbles. Continue spooning the cement into the mold to the desired depth. Smooth the top of the cement with the back of the spoon. Let the cement set for 30 minutes before you add embellishments to your stepping stone.
Step 5 - Embellish Your Stepping Stone
Now it’s time to execute your personalized design. If you are making a memorial stepping stone, use a stick of some kind to write words and make designs. Further decorate with glass stones, marbles, mosaic tiles, laminated photographs, or anything else that can withstand the outdoor elements. If you are making a mosaic stepping stone, refer to your design and push the mosaic tiles into the cement. The cement will take at least an hour or two to dry, so mistakes can be easily smoothed over. Let the stepping stone dry for 48 hours, then protect it with a waterproof clear finish sealant. Wait another 48 to 72 hours before setting it into the ground.
Personalizing your new stepping stone is a fun and easy process. Draw your design ideas out before you make the stepping stone. Wait 30 minutes after you pour the cement to begin embellishing your stepping stone. Use your boundless creativity and imagination to add decorative elements to a memorial stepping stone or design a one-of-a-kind mosaic stepping stone from mosaic tiles.